neti pot

The Neti Pot How-To

If you get sinus headaches, pressure or pain, or have allergies, you know just how agonizing it can be. Here’s something that might help.

Using a Neti Pot is a very old cleansing technique and tradition of India. There it is referred to as Jala Neti. The literal translation means ‘water cleansing’ or ‘water irrigation’. It is a flushing out of the nasal cavity. Our nasal cavity is full of fine hairs called cilia. This flushing helps them to move faster and thus push irritants, bacteria etc, to back of the throat where it can be spit out or to the nose where it can be blown out.

Some people use a Neti Pot to help with sinus congestion, sinusitis, allergies, and sinus infections or as a preventative measure. It’s also a more cost-effective form of treatment and, in addition, doesn’t have all the side effects of prescription medication.

The way it works is that the Neti Pot is filled with a body-warm solution of water and salt (it is recommended to use Iodine-free salt or natural sea salt. Also, remember to use a fresh solution every time). The solution is then poured into the nostrils one at a time while breathing through the mouth. You then switch sides. Remember to learn forward and tilt your head to the opposite side of the Neti Pot. Also, when finished, it’s good to first sniff in gently a couple of times to help return the nasal passages back to normal (sometimes referred to as ‘helping them dry’) and then gently blow your nose – do this oh so gently. If any gets into your mouth, don’t worry, just spit it out. If you accidentally swallow it, it’s OK too. It is also important to note that there should be no pain or uncomfortable feeling involved. If there is, stop immediately and reassess.

The solution helps to remove anything that may be ‘stuck’ up there – dust, pollen, bacteria, excess mucus, pollutants, etc. It is typically eight ounces of water and a fourth teaspoon of salt. The salt should be dissolved completely. If you use too much salt, your nasal cavities will be sure to inform you with a nice burning sensation. Also, the water must not be too hot. Test the water both for temperature and salt before using. Also, it is very important to take the time to ensure all of the water has drained from your nasal cavities. Take your time and it will be a worthwhile, healthy experience.

Click here for a  short how-to video that could be helpful. I have not purchased my Neti Pot from this company, but I feel the video is helpful and has some really good tips.

And, as you may already know, yogis, as cool as they are, do some pretty weird things, but these weird things usually pay off in the end. Enjoy and try something new!

5 Peculiar Things that Could Change Your Life

Ok, maybe these things haven’t completely changed my life, but they’ve helped a whole lot. At first using these objects may be as weird as they appear, but there is no doubt they are an experience worth trying.

  • A tongue scraper: toothbrushes are made to clean your teeth; tongue scrapers are made to clean your tongue. Tongue scraping is an Ayurvedic technique used for treating bad breath, but has many other healthy benefits. During the night our body is busy detoxing aka removing toxins. When you wake up, you may notice a white coating on your tongue. Scraping off these toxins first thing in the morning helps your body to avoid re-absorption. It’s not only good for better smelling breath, but helps to remove plague from teeth, helps taste bud functioning and aids in overall optimal oral health. Maybe one day tongue scraping will be as cool as flossing.
  • 1.5 liters of water: ever hear of this thing called water therapy? Mostly known in India, China and Japan, water therapy is drinking 1.5 liters of water first thing in the morning. This is said to help remove toxins, stimulate healthy bowel movements and help fight disease. Considered pretty much harmless, it also claims to have other health benefits such as helping headaches, energy levels, constipation, diarrhea and detoxification.
  • A body brush: perhaps you have forgotten that the skin is the largest organ of the body. This organ helps to eliminate a critical amount of toxins – they say up to one pound a day! Skin brushing (with a body brush) also stimulates the organs underneath the skin that aid in the detoxification of toxins. Some other benefits include stimulating the lymphatic system, removing dead layers of skin cells, stimulating the circulation and immune systems and helps the kidneys to function optimally.
  • Neti pot: also known as a ‘nose bidet’, a neti pot is used to pour warm, slightly salty water through the nasal passages and sinuses. Neti pots have been used in India and South Asia and have shown to be a safe and effective way for treating eye complaints, sinusitis, asthma, the common cold, nasal congestion and respiratory ailments. It is recommended to use a Neti pot that is right for your nostrils.
  • Incense: not just an air freshener, the practice of burning incense has been used throughout centuries for sacred ceremonies and rituals. Today it is used to create desired atmospheres and healing, Its said to have both healing effects on the mind and the body. Some of the noted benefits include fighting depression, headaches, anxiety and insomnia. It is recommended to use plant-based and essential oil-based incenses

I would love to hear your experiences, comments and recommendations.

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